The U.S. Senate on Wednesday approved the Chips and Science Act, a bill authorizing more than $250 billion in spending to boost technological innovation and the tech hubs of America as well as funding for basic research as well as improving the production of chips for semiconductors.
Lawmakers considered it to be a significant technological investment and the creation of jobs.
The bill, which has over 1,000 pages, was approved by a vote of 64-33. The legislation is scheduled to be ratified in the House at the close of the week just before an August break.
Washington Sen. Maria Cantwell helped spearhead the campaign.
“This concerns innovation all over the world and it’s about expanding opportunities all over the world,” she said on the floor of the Senate prior to the vote being taken.
“We cannot ignore the fact the fact that chip production is moving out of the country and that there is a chance that United States has lost its part of the manufacturing,” stated Cantwell, who is the chairperson of the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.
She pointed out that shortages of chips resulted in an estimated reduction of 240 billion dollars to the U.S. economy over the last year . The nation produces around 12 percent from the global supply chips that are vital to the manufacturing of cars and other electronics. If the proportion is way too small, Cantwell explained, the entire manufacturing system is destroyed.
The president Biden shared some of these thoughts.
“We made these chips. There aren’t many of them nowadays. The current investment in building more factories to manufacture chips will reduce the cost of anything from cars to all other items,” Biden said in a video posted on Twitter. “But more importantly , it’s likely to generate thousands of well paid jobs.”
The act contains:-
- A staggering $76 billion is needed to bring back chip production in the U.S. United States
- Millions of dollars are spent on Department of Energy (DOE) programs that support research in basic science as well as carbon sequestration, fusion energy advanced scientific computing high energy physics, and other areas.
- $81 billion will be allocated by the National Science Foundation over five years to fund research and education in STEM fields.
- More than $10 billion to The National Institute of Standards and Technology.
- Other programs address ocean acidification Space technology and exploration Blockchain and STEM education in rural communities, as well as bioengineering.
Locally, the additional funds could be beneficial to Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, which is located in Washington and comprises labs run by DOE.
The legislation was diverted in early March because of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, according to reports by the publication Roll Call. Members of the Senate who supported the legislation were in a position to restart their efforts after being prompted by a secret briefing to senators that warned it was becoming increasingly apparent that the U.S. was losing its technological advantage to foreign ventures.
“This is among the most important long-term planning legislation we’ve seen over a long period of period of time,” said Senate Majority Chairman Charles Schumer following the vote.
“Our grandchildren will be able to hold well pay jobs in fields we’re not imagining due to what we’re doing now, and we’ve done it in a joint effort, with both sides working in good faith, with respect to the most difficult of issues,” Schumer said.